Solo Uxoricide Impediment Ⅰ

Lina gets her first customer & what she thought would be a casual reading, turns into something a little more sinister

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Uxoricide Impediment Ⅰ

Postby Lei'Lani on July 28th, 2021, 1:55 am

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Mid-morning,
23rd Summer 521av
The Light Theatre


  Fiddling with the position of the tea cups, the placemats, the table cloth; anything she could get her hands on really, Lina's heart thundered in her chest and her stomach flipped with every breath. She had done several tea readings for the Konti women of Mura without doubt and with confidence, but it was all in casual interest.

  It never hinged on whether she would afford rent or food before. Not only that, it never hinged on whether her attraction as a fortune teller would earn her a place among the theatre troupe. If it was something she even wanted.

  The fire burned fiercely in the hearth and she had the kettle full of tea leaves boiling at the ready for any customer that would encounter her small secreted room within the Light Theatre; the sweet aroma of tea filling the small stuffy room.

  Her thoughts flashed back to the first interaction and battle she had with Euseiusn, about gaining position within the troupe. He had scoffed at her trade and told her that despite her appealing Konti heritage and thus authenticity, it would take great finesse, acting and persuasion to gain attention for her trade.

  Acting, she thought betrayed the essence of providing truth and clarity with her profession. It was something she didn't quite understand. Though, as her first customer entered her mysterious, "secreted" room within the theatre, she decided to indulge Eusesiun's advice of over acting the enthused aura that they expected of a fortune teller among the main land locals; the mystery and ambiguity that came with being able to connect to the realm of the Divines.

  "Welcome." Lina hissed through the dancing shadows of the small room she had been granted with to work her trade. Gesturing towards the vacant chair opposite the small round table, Lina smiled warmly, "Please, sir, sit." She questioned her common with every word spoken, but as Eusesiun had advised, acting came with preconceived confidence. If she believed, they would believe.

  The older gentleman removed his boulder hat, revealing his balding hair, as he sat anxiously at her table, pushing the chair back to allow his bulging figure room to fit before her laid out tea settings. Fingering his hat anxiously he eyed Lina suspiciously. "You, you're a real Konti woman?"

  Lina, encouraging the act she had begun, kept her feigned confidence at the surface as she moved to the hearth to retrieve the preboiled kettle; she kept her smile warm, her eyes soft, as she inconspicuously revealed glittering scales of pastel pinks and blues on her wrists, in the dancing light of the hearth, "I am, Konti. Blessed by Avalis." It was no lie, so made it easier for Lina to instil this confidence and settle her first customer that she would indeed not be swindling him for his money.

  The balding, plump gentleman sat still in the chair on the opposite side of the table, eyeing her suspiciously, "Alright," He drawled, "So, how does this work?"

  Lina maintained her swathe demeanour in attempt to keep up the charade of composure, attempting to keep her voice smooth like satin and conceal her nerves. "Place coin on table and I give you refreshment." The word 'refreshment' she recalled was the word Eusesiun had bequeathed she use. It was apparently a more sophisticated word in common than 'drink'.

  As Lina turned to pour the steaming liquid into the man's cup, he plonked his coin on top of the table with a sly smile. Something about his smile and lingering gaze unnerved Lina, but she couldn't pinpoint what it was about him. Dismissing the fleeting thought, she smiled warmly and as elegantly as she could manage, slipped into her seat opposite her customer.

  "Drink, let your dreams, worries, questions be calm."

  The man warily lifted his cup and slurped the hot tea, all the while his wary, beady eyes watching her every move. Lina had to focus to maintain her equable air and prevent his unnerving glances from breaking her serene façade.

  "Think on your questions, why you come." Lina reached her hands across the table, "Please, your hand."

  With his spare hand, the man reluctantly placed his meaty fingers in hers. Closing her eyes, Lina turned his palm upright and placed her other hand over the top, cupping his sweating hand in hers.

  She suddenly gasped with the influx of images as her vision was flooded with his fears. The man nearly jerked his hand away, frightened by her sudden reaction to his touch, but with his hand cupped between hers, she held him tightly for the brief moment it took for her gift to work.
Last edited by Lei'Lani on August 17th, 2021, 1:05 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Lei'Lani
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Uxoricide Impediment

Postby Lei'Lani on August 9th, 2021, 2:05 am

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  Allowing herself to follow where her vision will, she could feel his terror seep into her being. He felt scared, scared of being caught. Metal bars surrounded him in a cold, dank room. Water dribbled down the slimy walls in the dark. He was imprisoned. His fine clothes stripped from his body, his life of luxury leeched away; to be poor was worse than death.

  Opening her eyes, Lina attempted to swallow down and box away the torrent of alarm and panic, the horror of being confined; emotions that were not hers. The customer sat wide eyed across from her.

  Spinning his tea idly, seemingly no longer eager to trust in her, the gentleman narrowed his eyes suspiciously, "What in the names of the divines was that?!" He spat. She had to make him feel comfortable, safe, and quickly least she lose her first client.

  Lina forced a broad smile and gave the hand she held a comforting squeeze before releasing her grip and bowing her head in supplication, "Apologies. I was, opening my eye, see, to read," She gestured towards the cup of tea he comforted with his other hand. "To answer you, questions and guide."


  The man continued to eye her hesitantly, Lina spread her arms in a conciliatory nature, "For I gift, help you, I must see. Avalis blesses Konti. I will sooth your worries. Not be afraid. You protect, here."

  Lina was more used to dealing with the women of Mura who did not fear her gifts and were accustomed to spiritual and enigmatic ways of life. She was now quickly learning that outside Mura, the rest of the world mustn't be used to delving into the more mysterious and unknown aspects of the Divine that connected with their realm. She would have to keep that in mind for future customers.

  To further ease the customer's misgivings, Lina poured herself a cup of tea and with a little smile, lifted it to her lips as she attempted to divert the course of conversation, "Please, I will join. What is your name sir?"

  Watching her intently, the gentleman cleared his throat and sat straighter in his chair, lifting his head high, "I am Jornus, fourth cousin, twice removed to the Lentulius family merchants. They are highly respected within the Ancient quarter and have great esteem with all those of rank whom matter."

  His lips pursed and his cheeks bulged with obvious pride of his association to the family, though Lina hadn't a clue what half of what he said meant. His fine clothes and the memory of his fear of being stripped of wealth, was all Lina needed to know to guess his character, especially in the way he displayed himself.

  Despite her own judgements, Lina raised her eyebrows in feigned wonder and bowed her head in respect of his declaration of higher rank. Her job was to make him comfortable and guide him with whatever questions he came in search of answers for. It was not her place to judge.

  "I honoured, sir Jornus, you sit at I table. Please drink deep and Avalis will guide."

  As they both sipped at their tea, Jornus relatively more at ease now that he had made her aware of his standing and seemingly felt more comfortable being in a position of power over her. Lina allowed herself to float with a soothing deep breath of the sweet herbal tea, seeking the Chavena; drawing her power from the blessing of Avalis.

  If she could find this one's individual chavi, it might help her better interpret his reading and maybe more clearly understand the answers he had come looking for. He was certainly from an entirely different world than she, and she felt as though she needed more context into this man's life to better guide him to what he sought.

  Surfing the kaleidoscope of the Chavena was a freeing experience and Lina oft had to be careful not to linger here too long, least she get lost among the millions of ribbons of chavi. She focused on the reason for her search. Jornus, her first client. She needed to understand more of him to better serve him as a teller of his fortune.

  It didn't take long to find his personal chavi, a breath or two at most in his time. Glimpsing his past was easier to read as the past was solidified, written in stone as it were. She saw a woman, mature though her smile bore the spirit of youth; she was beautiful, blonde and dressed in an elegant, emerald gown. She sat opposite Jornus, at the length of a stately dinner table. They did not speak, nor smile as they indulged in a variety of food Lina half didn't recognise. The tension was bitter.

  Suddenly the woman's face contorted and her fork fell to the carpeted floors in a muffled clatter. Jornus didn't rush to her aid as she crumpled to the ground from her chair. He did smile, then, as he casually finished his meal.

  With a sharp inhale, Lina opened her eyes and soaked in the man sitting across from her in a new light. Reading his past did not alleviate the unnerving warning she felt from the guileful look behind his shifting eyes.

  As he finished the last of his tea, Lina struggled to interpret what it was she saw. It didn't make sense. It was also out of context, she reminded herself. Forcing her concerns to the back of her mind, Lina swallowed back her doubts; she had a job to do.

  "Good, you finish. May I?" Lina smiled woodenly as she struggled to maintain her ploy of confidence. Reaching her hand out to receive Jornus' cup and saucer, he obliged eagerly; those intense eyes scrutinising her every move.

  Breathing deeply to calm herself, Lina swirled the little remaining tea in the cup thrice before flipping it over onto the saucer. She coyly peered up at her client and smiled, "Shall we begin?" To which he responded with a sly lick of his lips and an earnest nod.
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Lei'Lani
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Uxoricide Impediment

Postby Lei'Lani on August 12th, 2021, 9:15 pm

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  The remainder of the tea spilled out onto the saucer, leaving behind the disarray of smattered tea leaves within the cup. Flipping it over, both Lina and Jornus leaned in over the top, peering down on the uncertain.

  Upon a quick first glance of the more obvious patterns emerging from the clustered tea leaves, it appeared a mix of good fortune and a couple of obstacles. Holding the tea cup in one hand Lina ever so carefully used her index finger to show case what she hoped to explain.

  "First, we look here," Lina indicated the top cusp of the cup, "This is past." Lina squinted her eyes as she gave this area of his cup a closer look, twisting the cup this way and that to perceive the small speckles of tea leaves from every angle to insure there would be no mistake.

  The client attempted to edge even closer, verging on the edge of his seat. He seemed to sweat nervously, out of the corner of her eye Lina glimpsed small beads as they trickled down past his temples which he dabbed away with a handkerchief he pulled from his pocket. Why would he be so nervous about a reading of his past, was it not the future that everyone was most anxious to hear?

  Shaking herself back to focus upon the cup Lina pushed the troubling thoughts to the back of her mind and concentrated on giving her client what he paid for. "Here in past, a," Lina stuttered as she fought to recover the word for eagle.

  Biting her lip she couldn't remember, all she could think that was close was 'big bird'; who knew reading tea leaves would be so tricky with such a language barrier.

  The faltering step in her language caused a falter in her confidence, the 'swathe act' she had attempted was blown. She would just have to continue as herself. It would be less tiresome not having to maintain a pretence anyway.

  "A big bird, you by surprise come into rich by house?" A quick flick over a small cluster of leaves next to the eagle, Lina continued before he could answer, "A ring, cover with clouds. Rich by house was with sad marriage?"

  Jornus slunk back into his chair, clenching his jaw, clearly unnerved with the accuracy of her telling, "Yes," He drawled, "That was my first marriage, how I came to be part of the Lentulius family, however distantly related. I am now happily married to my second." There was something off in his voice that caught Lina's attention, something that betrayed his confidence in what he said. Was it a lie?

  He eyed her cautiously. Lina's stomach knotted as she quickly realised her first client seemed very uncomfortable with her delving into his past. The image of the blonde woman slumping from the dining table sent a shiver down her spine.

  Maybe it was best to simply rush onto the future telling of his reading. Lina fidgeted nervously, unable to prevent his sinister glower from penetrating her façade. Swallowing harshly against her drying mouth, Lina cleared her throat as she went on,

  "To the future. What may?"
Last edited by Lei'Lani on August 12th, 2021, 10:04 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Lei'Lani
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Joined roleplay: July 1st, 2021, 8:28 pm
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Uxoricide Impediment

Postby Lei'Lani on August 12th, 2021, 9:23 pm

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  Jornus lifted his head, those beady, bitter eyes watching her closely. She took his uneasy silence as permission to continue the reading.

  Lina looked to the tea leaves that settled on bottom half of his empty cup, which represented the future. An arch closely nestled by a flower? Lina squinted in thought as she racked her brain, but which flower did it look like? A daisy maybe? Above those symbols, was that a smattering of leaves that looked like a cross? 'X' meant an obstacle didn't it? Again another ring covered by clouds bore shadow over the top of them all.

  Taking into account that the ring covered with clouds lay above the arch with the omen of a cross in the shape of an 'X' meant his unhappy marriage would be the obstacle? Or did the unhappy marriage with the 'X' mean that he would lose his wife? Again?

  Reading the tea leaves and discerning symbols among the madness was the easy part. Figuring out what they could mean was altogether trickier. Lina chewed the inside of her cheek.

  Providing her customers with the wrong perception of what the symbols could mean could alter the course of their lives. Clients could either take what happened in these sessions as gospel, or others simply laughed it off as nothing but jest. From Jornus' eager and intense demeanour, Lina surmised he might be the former.

  "Well?!" Jornus snapped impatiently.

  Sucking her lips tightly together in a forced smile, Lina judged it safer to give him each possible perception. Then the decision would be in his hands. "The leaves can be saw in different ways."

  She pointed nervously to the ring covered with clouds, anxious that he might get angry with the fact that he had claimed to be happy in his second marriage, "Like before. Sad marriage."

  Lina half flinched in anticipation of his explosive reaction - it didn't come. Glancing up, Jornus instead sat clenching his jaw, his fingers curled tightly into a fist on the table. Lina hurried her telling along, suddenly scared to be alone in this small dark room with him.

  "Under, cross 'X'," Lina gestured the shape of the x by crossing her two index fingers, "Mean two. One mean obstacle. Two mean lost." Lina frowned in genuine sympathy despite his unnerving and frightening countenance. "Together mean, sad marriage obstacle, or sad marriage lost."

  She allowed Jornus to sit with this information for a tick. News of this bearing usually struck her clients profoundly, however Jornus' thin lips curled into a sly smirk, sending cold shivers down her spine; forcing Lina to advert her gaze and cup in her hands, which shook ever so slightly. With each growing moment Lina's voice began to tremble, but she carried on. The quicker she finished his reading, the quicker she could get him out of here!

  "Under ring with cloud, arch top of flower. Could mean happy open, flower maybe love. So sad marriage maybe obstacle to new open for love. Or sad marriage lose, to open to love." Lina sat back slowly into her chair and pulled both her hands from the table to cup into her lap.

  Her large doe eyes watched Jornus across the table anxiously, fidgeting under the small round table with her fingers, her heart hammering in her chest while she awaited his response. Jornus remained unreadable for a few moments. Behind those guileful eyes of his, Lina could tell he was toying with her words, deciding how they weaved into his life.

  Suddenly he burst out laughing. Lina jumped with his outburst and smiled nervously along as he chuckled to himself, "You, you happy? With reading? It answer question?"

  Jornus slapped a hand onto the table, rattling the china and causing the small stack of coins to slip into a slump, "That is precisely what I wanted to hear!" He suddenly paused as a darkening frown creased his overbearing brow, "It doesn't say whether the fortune will go with the marriage though does it? Does it?"

  Lina peeked down at the empty tea cup to see if she had missed anything but there were no other discernible markings and so shook her head in response, her voice trembling too much to speak.

  Jornus grinned widely as he sat back and stroked his clean-shaved chin, "Good, very good. Yes," He droned. Lina shirked away from the sudden calculating look in his eyes, like he was planning something vile, her gaze faltering the the floor, "You have settled it for me then. Very good."

  He suddenly jumped to his feet, surprisingly swift for a man of his bearing. As he edged out from the dainty round table, the shoddy wooden chair was pushed back tightly against the stone wall, creaking against the weight. Lina remained where she was, bowing her head cordially, just thankful he was pleased and would now be on his way, "I happy, tea reading provide guidance for you."

  Licking his lips his gaze soaked her in and as Lina noted the cogs turning in his head, "Yes, guidance, yes. It certainly has highlighted the obstacle in which I must... Subdue." That smile again that caused shivers to run down her spine graced his lips once more.

  A chord suddenly strung within her, it was malicious. Her gaze flicked back to those beady eyes as realisation hit her. It was maliciousness she could feel emanating from him that caused her unease this whole time. She hadn't been able to put her finger on it before, but now in those eyes, that is what she saw.

  As Jornus replaced his boulder hat atop his balding head and took his leave, finally, from the cramped room, stuffy from the burning hearth behind her, Lina remained glued to her seat with a sickening feeling that something awful was about to happen. She knew it was rude not to attend to her client as he departed, not the proper etiquette, but the growing weight in her stomach kept her frozen in her chair.

  Lina's breaths became increasingly rapid. His obstacle that he had to subdue? What an odd word to use. His unhappy marriage was something he must subdue? Lina massaged her collar bone fretfully. Was he going to subdue his wife for the prospect of a new love?

  The memory of what she had glimpsed from his past of his first marriage haunted her. The woman, slumping to the ground, her face contorted. His sly smile. Oh Divines. Lina's chest heaved with the rising panic. She must be wrong, surely.

  He wouldn't... would he?


END. Or is it? ...




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Lei'Lani
Fortune Teller
 
Posts: 52
Words: 41988
Joined roleplay: July 1st, 2021, 8:28 pm
Location: Zeltiva
Race: Konti
Character sheet
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